Going Digital: Shaping Policies, Improving Lives

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Digital technologies and data are transformational. People, firms and governments live, interact, work and produce differently than in the past, and these changes are accelerating rapidly. How can we realise the immense promises of digital technologies and data for growth and well-being in a fast evolving world? This report charts the road ahead. It identifies seven policy dimensions that allow governments – together with citizens, firms and stakeholders – to shape digital transformation to improve lives. It also highlights key opportunities, challenges and policies related to each dimension, offers new insights, evidence and analysis, and provides recommendations for better policies in the digital age.

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Understanding digital transformation

Effective policy making in the digital age requires an understanding of the drivers of digital transformation. This chapter describes the ecosystem of key digital technologies, including the Internet of Things, next generation “5G” wireless networks, cloud computing, big data analytics, artificial intelligence, blockchain and computing power. It discusses the transformative effects of these digital technologies, data and business models across the economy and society. It then highlights seven key properties, or “vectors”, of digital transformation that manifest in new business models, affecting policies in a range of sectors and policy domains.



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